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Brutal Simplification: A Guide to 0.0 for CCP Devs

Jas Dor
Republic University
Minmatar Republic
#1 - 2012-02-06 03:57:53 UTC
Since relatively few Devs have played in a 0.0 I thought I should post an explanation of the dynamics of such groups.

A 0.0 alliance is a mission focused group. The mission of a 0.0 (sov holding) alliance is to extract isk resources.

There have been four major period for 0.0 alliances. The early period is something I was not here for and won't comment on.

The second phase of 0.0 alliances was the T2 BPO period. During this period alliances generated isk by attracting members who owned T2 BPOs and convincing those members to place these assets at their corp/alliances disposal. Successful alliances of this period focused on building a sense of loyalty from the individual members to the group. This period saw such themed alliances as Band of Brothers (headed by a communist corp), Interstellar Star Base Syndicate, Interstellar Alcohol Conglomerate, Ascendant Frontiers and Firmis Ixion (the last two alliance specifically geared to attract the crafters/builders most likely to have T2 BPOs). Group loyalty during this period was so strong that it gave rise to the T20 incident. The introduction of invention brought an end to this period.

The rise of Moon Goo as a major commodity coincided with the outbreak of the BoB wars. While capital ships quickly dominated the stage, the loss of a number of unsupported capitals gave rise to the continued viability of subcap gameplay. Further widespread cynojamming gave subcap pilots a viable, if often boring, role. The AoE Doomsday Device (an overpowered and fun killing mechanic) required alliances to attract a large cadre of subcap pilots so as to have enough DDD survivors to take down a jammer.

The fourth period of EvE alliances came about with Dominion. The shift in supercaps and sovereignty mechanics removed the need for a large cadre of subcap pilots. Instead alliances needed only keep the attention of a high SP group of cap and supercap pilots (the later being far more important than the former).

What CCP Devs need to grasp is the process of brutal simplification that takes place in 0.0. When a strong sense of community became no longer important to the 0.0 mission the great themed alliances vanished (giving is the NC, or as I lake to call them bureaucrats in space) . Likewise when industry stopped being vital to mission, the industrialists vanished from 0.0.

You will hear a lot of forum whining about the problems with 0.0. The most important one is the feeling that pilots do not want to deal with alliance leadership. There is a reason for this. Now that large number of subcap pilots are no longer needed for 0.0, those pilots are being forced out. The process of brutal simplification in 0.0 means that isk income from the mission (taking and holding moons) will be split amongst the fewest possible number of pilots. (Also see alliances that have great cap and supercap reimbursement policies but very little for subcap pilots). Today's alliances need only keep a comparatively small number of subcap pilots around.

Brutal simplification has major implications for 0.0 content. Any content that is unrelated to mission (taking and holding moons) in 0.0 is dead content. Witness the lack of use of 0.0 incursions. Further witness the development of AFK alliances, where the majority of pilots only log in their 0.0 characters when notified of operations by out of game means.

Brutal simplification has direct bearing on CCPs bottom line. The goons are an extremely old alliance structure that originated in the second (loyalty) phase of 0.0 evolution. Goons are motivated by members in an out of game community. For the average 0.0 alliance it makes no difference if a decommissioned subcap pilot returns to empire or leaves the game. All that matters is that the alliance retain cap and especially supercap pilots (the last extremely important as they may be purchasing their ships through plex sales and not tapping alliance resources).

Not all alliances are discarding their subcap pilots. In order to place surplus subcap pilots to use, null alliances have begun to focus them towards high sec gameplay. This can be seen in Goons recent ice interdiction effort and bricksquads incursion griefing. The important thing to note here is that most high sec players believe (probably rightly) that their is little to nothing they can do to stop null sec alliances from impacting their game play. This risks high sec players, rightly assuming that their are few places for lower SP subcap pilot in null, leaving the game as their content is shut down.

Brutal simplification argues strongly for a couple conclusions:

1. Moon Goo must die
2. Sov mechanics must change in a way that encourages subcap participation.
3. We desperately need a capship free environment in which small alliances can take and hold space on the constellation level. (Perhaps with the addition of new constellation sized WH systems in which outposts can be deployed or through a revamp to make POSes more outpost like).

I cannot stress how destructive caps and especially supercaps are to the 0.0 experience. If a powerball of supercaps with a few supporting capship is all that is required to accomplish the 0.0 mission. While large fleet fights still occur it is useful to note that these involve a number of allied entities pooling their subcap resources with an agreement to split the moons.

In short: you must either kill 0.0 as it now stands or watch a constant outflow of players from the game.
Hold The Pod
Zold The Pod
#2 - 2012-02-06 10:54:50 UTC
Whats funny is you spent all the time writing this out, just to prove how ******** you are.
Deviana Sevidon
Jades Falcon Guards
#3 - 2012-02-06 18:44:25 UTC
testawan wrote:
Whats funny is you spent all the time writing this out, just to prove how ******** you are.

While you managed it with just a single sentence. Roll if 10,058 Goon voices cried out and were suddenly silenced.

Mors Sanctitatis
Death of Virtue
#4 - 2012-02-07 02:41:49 UTC
Bent Barrel
#5 - 2012-02-07 07:51:50 UTC
nice summary .. I can agree with the second and third phases (lived them in a past life :-)). I do mourn for those times ...
Covert Kitty
SRS Industries
#6 - 2012-02-12 08:11:36 UTC
pretty accurate for the most part I think.

1: It probably would make sense to merge the moon goo system with the PI system (decentralize income)
2: Redo the station/outpost and pos systems, replacing them with a new more extensible, modular system including access control lists for rights management.
3: "Smallholding" to create small gang harassment targets
4: Revamp basic nullsec pve
5: Continue to look at ways to balance super caps